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Shah Rukh and Akshay are marketing wizards: Toilet producer on clash with Imtiaz Ali film

Producer Prerna Arora explains why there is no point in pushing the release date of either film.

Our Correspondent

Akshay Kumar’s Toilet – Ek Prem Katha and Shah Rukh Khan’s next with Imtiaz Ali are all set to clash at the box office on 11 August. While some trade pundits are of the view that the clash shouldn’t have happened, the producer of Toilet, Prena Arora, feels the competition between both the films is healthy.

Speaking to a daily, she said that the SRK starrer has a good chance of doing well since it doesn’t look like a typical Imtiaz film. “From what I know, it (reportedly titled Rehnuma) is not a usual Imtiaz Ali fare. It has a mega star like Shah Rukh Khan to pull the audience. People can watch both and like them. I hear talk about eating into each other's business, but this is healthy competition. Both SRK and Akshay are marketing wizards and know how to reach out to fans,” she said. 

Obviously, she is not even thinking of approaching the makers of the SRK starrer to change the release dates. “There is no point in pushing either (release) dates and we aren’t looking at getting into a conversation on it (with the makers of the Imtiaz directorial),” she said. 

Arora is also expecting media stories about she being at loggerheads with Anushka Sharma, who stars opposite Khan in the film. “Anushka and I are already working on a project; we will announce it next week and start shoot in June. Expect news on how we are trying to run down each other, but in reality, everything is amicable,” she added. 

She also explained why it was necessary for them to release their film on 11 August. “Initially, we thought of releasing the film on June 2, but the film's subject is such that taking it to theatres closer to Independence Day makes more sense. The film is a satire on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and has a nationalistic feel to it. It has to be pitched on the right day. We aren't clashing just for the sake of it.” 

This is Hindi cinema’s second big clash this year. The first one also featured SRK, when his film, Raees, was released with Hrithik Roshan’s Kaabil on 25 June.